The new Nasi Lemak Burger at McDonald’s Singapore was a huge hit. (Reuters)
McDonald’s Singapore released its newest burger in mid-July, and it’s simultaneously the most popular and most controversial item on the menu.
The chain’s new “Nasi Lemak” Burger, which is a take on one of the country’s popular dishes, has completely sold out after debuting in Singapore just two weeks ago, according to Channel NewsAsia. It’s a feat that’s even more impressive considering that some Singaporeans who have openly expressed disdain over McDonald’s attempt to interpret the meal as a sandwich.
Nasi lemak is a popular meal throughout Singapore, and it’s also very popular in nearby Malaysia, where it’s considered to be the country’s national dish. Traditionally, a plate of nasi lemak contains coconut-flavored rice, egg, anchovy, peanuts, sambal (spicy chili) sauce, and meats such as lamb or chicken.
McDonald’s burger, however, reimagines the dish as a sandwich made with a coconut-scented chicken patty, a fried egg, sambal sauce and cucumber slices, all served on a semolina bun — and this isn’t sitting well with more than a few critics on Twitter, some of whom complained about the missing rice.
what’s the deal with this nasi lemak burger not having rice? it’s nasi lemak-flavoured. not a plate of nasi lemak in between two buns????
— i. (@izyanrlee) July 15, 2017
McDonald’s, Nasi Lemak is nothing without the ‘nasi’. Here’s an idea: How bout Satay burger? Ketupat patty, peanut sauce and grilled meat.
— Sophie Rodrigues (@galrocker) July 14, 2017
Dear Mac, you should have just used rice bun to replace the burger bun… What is nasi lemak without nasi
— 란 (@haelogic) July 12, 2017
Despite this, the majority of tweets concerning McDonald’s new Nasi Lemak Burger seem to be positive, with one Twitter user praising it as “the best burger they have ever created.” Many others commented on the significant crowds and wait times at their local McDonald’s locations.
Not surprisingly, Agatha Yap, the senior director of marketing for McDonald’s Singapore, told CNBC that the Nasi Lemak Burger “has proven to be one of our most successful promotions in recent years.”
"We’ve seen tremendously overwhelming demand — in fact, double that of our expectations."
Channel NewsAsia further reported that two drinks which debuted alongside the burger — the Chendol McFlurry and Bandung McFizz — are also sold out across Singapore.
A representative for McDonald’s Singapore was not immediately available to confirm whether customers should expect the Nasi Lemak Burger back on menus anytime soon.